The only constant in the game industry is changing. And as changes go, the upcoming updates planned for the UA and advertising ecosystem in iOS 14 are pretty substantial for game makers. And while Apple recently announced that some of the most disruptive changes won’t be enforced until early 2021, it’s never too early to start planning.
The good news is that developers will have a few months of overlap between the current world and the next, where all tracking goes through Apple’s SKAdNetwork. This overlap will help create a smoother transition, enabling teams to work with the new tools, run UA in the new ecosystem, and optimize IDFA opt-in rates.
Not sure what to expect when the new version of iOS releases, or what you and your team should be doing to prepare? This guide for show what developers need to know about iOS 14.
One of the biggest changes coming as part of the iOS 14 update is to the App Tracking Transparency framework. Essentially, developers will now have to explicitly ask players to agree to share their usage data, and many unique advertising identifiers will no longer be available. This limits developers’ capability to track user actions post-install, target users in ad campaigns, build user-level performance dashboards, monetize via ads, and so on.
While between 10 to 30 percent of iOS users currently limit ad personalization, and as many as 15% currently use limited ad tracking to disable their IDFA, we expect as many as 80% of users will limit tracking once iOS 14 makes tracking explicitly opt-in.
These changes will dramatically alter the advertising and user acquisition ecosystem on iOS. Specifically:
- The line between paid and organic installs and revenues will become more blurry
- User acquisition efficiency will drop
- User-level ad reporting will be functionally impossible on iOS
- Retargeting campaigns will no longer be viable on iOS
- Apple’s SKAdNetwork might become the new “source of truth” for ad attribution on iOS as it’s adopted by the biggest players
- Post-install events will only be attributable for 24 hours (mostly)
- Ad Monetization efficiency will drop significantly